My grandmother used to make this cake for our birthdays. Because it is so rich with buttery, gluteny, betty-crockery goodness, it’s something to make only for very special occasions. I had been waiting impatiently for one such day, when finally a good friend of mine had a birthday. And coincidently, this friend happens to love chocolate, butter and sugar! I would like to share this family recipe with you, but with a warning: it is incredibly thick, making it easy to form the checkerboard shape. Make sure you have lots of people to share it with you.
Chocolate checkerboard cake
1 1/2 c. butter
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 c. all purpose or cake flour
1 c. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
4 tsp. baking powder
Grease and flour the bottom of each cake tin. Beat together sugar, butter, eggs and vanilla until fluffy. Sift flour and measure. Add baking powder and salt to flour and mix. Add 1/4 of flour to mix and beat. Add 1/3 of milk to mix and beat. Repeat until all milk and flour are added to the mixture.
Divide in round pans by creating three circles with each tin as follows- first pan: chocolate, vanilla, chocolate, second pan: vanilla, chocolate, vanilla. Bake about 20 minutes at 35o°. Cool before removing from cake tin. For icing, I used a basic chocolate and butter recipe and added orange zest.